By: Dimitri Shaposhnikov and Ryan Zwick
Sometimes, students at Wethersfield High School have a tough time getting to school in the morning on time. With traffic at an all time high and full parking, everyone is rushing to get into the school.
We have investigated and found that getting to school on time can be quite rough based on several factors. Students in their parent’s cars are waiting to be dropped off near the school in the long traffic line. We have investigated and found that on average, it can take about six minutes just to drive up to the school.
We can solve this problem by having everyone wake up at least 5 minutes earlier. There will still be traffic, but if everyone gets on time, then everyone can make it to class. No matter how long traffic takes, driving earlier can solve the problem.
While WHS has 185 students registered to park at the school, not all students are registered and still park where they aren't supposed to. Students who arrive to school later are forced to park in a dirt parking lot, another 4 minute walk from the school.
To solve this problem, we need to make sure that people who are parking in that parking lot get checked to see if they have their registration, as that would make it more fair. If you would like to get a registration, it is super easy. Go to the office and register, which is completely free.
Let's get this straight, everyone knows that the bell sometimes doesn't always ring at 7:40am, but sooner. Sometimes it is possible that the bell rings at 7:38 or even 7:37, which is another reason to try to get to school a bit earlier.
Basically, it all comes down to having the students make a change. If the traffic is to be improved, you need the majority of people agreeing to try to solve the problem.
Listen up, this is dire.
Walking. It’s the simplest task, yet people continue to screw it up.
I know it sounds funny, that I’m making a big deal over walking in the halls, but it’s way more of an issue than one would think. For the last 3 and ½ years I’ve unfortunately been stuck in the worst school traffic, been behind the slowest students, and have gotten slammed into on numerous occasions. The most frustrating part is that kids don’t seem to realize or understand what they’re doing, why it’s bad, and how their actions affect others. I’m just trying to get to class on time and with only 4 minutes even the smallest thing can make us late.
There are a few unofficial rules when it comes to walking in the school. The school is a mess when it comes to walking and I’m here to remind people of those rules. I may only have a semester left, but I want to at least try to make the issue with walking either less of an issue or none at all.
Rule 1- Walk on the right side
The hallway is like the road and the people are like the cars. We drive on the right and we walk on the right. Everyone who walk in one direction should all be on the same side of the hall therefore, making room for people who are walking in the opposite direction (their right) and preventing collisions.
Rule 2- Don’t take up the entire hall with your friends
Many friends like to walk in groups all together, but they tend to line up horizontally so they’re can all walk next to each other. Don’t do this. We get it you want to be with your friends, but if you’re all taking up that space, you’re affecting all those behind you and those walking towards you. You make it difficult to pass or break through the line, and then stop to move and make way for others. If you’re one to do this, well you can’t get mad if someone knocks into you because, you and your friends are at fault. Just walk behind each other, you aren’t missing out on anything with your friends.
Rule 3- Do not walk at a speed of .0005 mph
Please do not walk slow. When you’re barely walking, you’re giving everyone behind you a headache. Everyone is just trying to get to their class and you’re the one who is about to make them all late. We all walk our own speeds, but you need to be aware that there are a stream of people behind you. If you’re going to constantly walk at a slow speed you have to at least make room for people to pass you.
Rule 4- Do not stop in the middle of the hall
I have to be honest, this one makes no sense. There is no reason for you to come to a dead stop in the middle of the hall. There is no reason to scream and stop to talk to your friends- you can talk to them whenever you want, you can even walk and talk at the same time. When you come to a brief stop everyone behind you has to stop and find someway around you and your friends taking up the entire hall.
Rule 5- No one likes hugging the corners
For no reason should you be hugging the the corner, especially when you’re walking in the hall during class time. There is no one in the hall, but you decided it’s okay to hug the corner. There’s an entire hall to walk in. The worst is when you’re just walking and turn the corner and someone just ramps into you. Why would you ever do that?
Rule 6- Let people merge
The hallways mirror roads minus the stop signs and lights. The main staircase is the most congested area I’ve ever been in. People can’t make it to the staircase from lunch, or people decide once the lunch bell rings that you can walk down both sides of the staircase, not leaving any space for people to get up the stairs- if they’re even able to make it to the stairs. You have to squirm your way up the stairs against everyone and direction of traffic. Just let people by, we don’t want to all collide with one another.
For the most part, walking is easy and plenty of students can successfully do it, but everyone has their off days. This is just a little guide to help the school run a little smoother. When you’re walking just try to remember these few unofficial rules and I promise you those short 4 minutes between classes will be better.
Tips for Studying
Mid term week is around the corner and this is the point that stressing out comes in handy. It is ridiculously hard to be studying while you can be on your phone or watching Bird Box like everyone else at the moment.
It takes a lot to get in a tone that allows you to study without any distractions. Here are some simple tips that literally anyone can follow to be successful at getting a good grade on your tests;
At the end of the day, if you do what you need to and stay focused, you will do great on your exams! Best of luck next week!
A great way to show our WHS pride and support our school is to purchase some school apparel. Buying apparel like hoodies, sweatpants, beanies, windbreakers and long sleeved shirts is a great way to keep yourself warm during classes and especially the cold winter months.
If interested, see Mrs. Belanger in room 502 to pick up an order form. Cash and checks are accepted. All order forms are due back to Mrs. Belanger by Wednesday, Feb. 13.
The proceeds will have a great benefit as they will go towards the Class of 2020!
Sand in the Sand
Hannah Nardella and Alyssa Prosperi
Mr. Sand is a US History, International Studies, and Current Issues teacher here at Wethersfield High School. He has been a teacher for 29 years, starting at E.O. Smith for 10 years and now has been here ever since. He went to UCONN and got his Bachelors in Science and Education and a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction. He’s been married for 23 years and has two children.
Mr. Sand is one of the few teachers at WHS who does school trips, he’s been doing them since 1995 (a very long time), over the past 24 years he’s gone on eight trips including Belize, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Greece.
Usually 30 students and 4-5 chaperones attend a trip together. Out of his many trips Belize and Costa Rica have been his favorites. Next month we have the pleasure of joining him for Belize and we couldn’t be anymore excited. It’s not all sunshine and sand though, as Mr. Sand has had to deal with some hard times, for example when one of his students was terrified to do the sea trek. That’s when you put a helmet on and walk across the ocean floor. He dealt with it by having her best friend go down first to tell her she’d be ok and then Mr. Sand went to the bottom and walked along it with her.
When asked why he takes the time, energy, and effort to plan and organize these trips he replied with, “I do everything for the students, my main goal is for them to enjoy their vacation but get an educational piece out of it as well. I love to give students experiences they will never forget.”
Like I mentioned, earlier Alyssa and I are both attending the Belize trip coming up next month but Mr. Sand has more than just that planned for the future. He’s planning trips to Australia, New Zealand and Costa Rica as well.
Sadly, he has informed us that after 24 years he will be done with the school trips and Costa Rica will be his final one. He has a former student who accompanies him to his Belize trips and has been since she graduated. We asked him what some tips would be for people planning trips for high school aged kids and he said, “Make sure you’re doing it for the kids.”
Mr. Sand also left us with a funny story to share. On the way back from Costa Rica a couple of years ago, some students bought hot sauce forgetting about the 3 oz rule for planes. A student was stopped and questioned about the more than 3 oz of liquid in her bag. After some freaking out and a scare that she might not be able to fly home, everything turned out fine and the students were still able to enjoy some hot sauce!
If you are interested in attending a future school trip, please go see Mr. Sand and talk to him about it!
Our final year of high school will soon come to a close and the memories we’ve shared as a class will be put in one place and one place only: the yearbook. With that said, it is best to buy your yearbook now while it is still early because the price will go up as the remainder of the year goes by.
To purchase yours, click on the link to start your account https://www.jostens.com/apps/store/productBrowse/1037371/Wethersfield-High-School/2019-Yearbook/2018080604171726357/CATALOG_SHOP/. Or you can go to the WHS school website under the yearbook tab found here: https://sites.google.com/wethersfield.me/whsyearbook.
The current price of the yearbook is $90. Keep in mind the price will go up if you choose to purchase it later in the year, so please consider buying it now!
The yearbook has all four years of our time together and is the signature piece of remembrance of high school for students. Key aspects of the yearbook are our senior quotes, senior photos, pictures with friends and being able to look back at on our school spirit.
Don’t miss out on this opportunity while the prices are STILL at their lowest. Go to Jostens or the WHS web page to begin your purchase.
Ajla Ahmetovic and Summer Acosta
Chris Torla, Executive Chef at Trumbull Kitchen in Hartford held an assembly on December 6 from 10:45 to 11:30 in the auditorium. The purpose of the assembly was to discuss his career in business and culinary arts as a way to inspire the students who hope to become prospective chefs and business workers.
Students were able to ask personal questions to Chef Torla, giving them a one-on-one chance to talk, and an opportunity for the student to learn about their potential career.
Student asked “ Have you ever been on one of those cooking shows ? ”
Torla said “ No .“
Student asked “ Why? ”
Torla had explained he doesn’t believe in those kind of shows. He doesn't see how they would benefit him and he thinks they have way too much drama and is more about entertainment then are about cooking.
With Torla’s experience as a Managing Partner of Trumbull Kitchen, and education at The Culinary Institute of America, this was a rare and informative opportunity. One students wouldn’t forget. He hopes, he has reached out to the students about what the real world is like and the opportunities that are out there.
Helping out Haiti in Fashion Design
Wethersfield High School has many creative and fun electives to choose from, one of them being fashion design. This class is a good opportunity for anyone that loves to design and create their own clothing by hand. One of the many things you learn in this class is sewing, which is good for anyone who’s into fashion and creating their own clothing, or just a basic necessity to know for everyday life.
Last year in class, Ms. Leuschner set up a project for all of her students to do. After teaching them how to sew, she made it her mission to get her students to create 100 little handmade dresses and drawstring bags. These dresses and bags were sent to Haiti to all the children and women in need of clothes and bags to carry around their belongings. She organized everyone into stations.
Leuschner put students in charge of each dress size, where each of the students in their stations were all responsible for their own job. For example, one would be in charge for cutting out the fabric, the next person sewed it, and the next person made sure everything was correctly done. The same thing was done for the bags. Not only did the students help people in need who don’t have the same resources we have, but they increased their sewing skills and worked together to problem solve, especially if there were any complications along the way or something was done wrong. There’s nothing bad about doing something wrong in fashion design. It’s okay because that’s what the class is there for, to learn.
Currently, the students are creating their own pajama pants which Ms. Leuschner has been doing for years. I’ve witnessed kids get very frustrated during the process of this because it takes very long to do and you have to follow everything correctly step by step, or else it won’t come out right. In the end, you get a nice cozy pair of pajama pants without having to go out and spend your own money.
The students are also working on making their own lanyards and eventually selling them to other students around the school. I think this is a great way to show others how fun and creative the class is, as well as giving out pretty lanyards to the students.
As midterms approach it’s good to keep in mind, that these tests are important but they are not life or death! For the seniors taking midterms at WHS it can be even more added stress because of all the other things we may have going on. The stress of applying to colleges, working jobs on top of having schoolwork, and keeping our grades up so we can graduate. Since many of us still need to take midterms, I came up with a list of ways to help survive these tests, and make life a little easier.
1. How to Really Study
It’s important to study even if you think you know the material well because it helps review and keep the material fresh in your memory. However, if you push off studying till the night before the test, you’re asking for a bad time. There is a decent amount of material to cover while studying. It’s best to have time set aside to study, but break your study time into increments. You don’t have to take hours reviewing material and overwork yourself! Study for 20 minutes then take a break.
2. Get a Good Night's Sleep
Yes we all know this but the impact sleep can have is truly crucial for success. There was a study that found, staying awake for 21 hours straight would give you the mental capacity of someone who is “legally drunk.” Meaning lack of sleep messes with your ability to function overall. At least 8 hours of sleep per night is enough. For example, if you wake up at 6:00 am in the morning, you could still go to bed at 10:00 pm the night before and be well rested.
3. Eat Breakfast
This one is often swept under the rug because most of us don’t have time for breakfast in the morning. Even if you wake up and eat a banana quickly or some crackers, it’ll help to have something in your system. Another study has found that students who skip breakfast experience a 20-40% reduction in cognition.
4. Stay Hydrated!
I’m guilty of waking up every morning and drinking coffee but it’s important to also drink plenty of water. I’m sure we’re well aware of the effects that dehydration brings. Drinking enough fluids will increase performance and make you feel more lively!
5. Don’t Overstress
Midterms are only 20% of our final grade and while it is helpful to do well on them, you will still be ok if you do poorly. Trying your best is all teachers ask, and they want us to do well. If a certain class gives you trouble just do what you can and try to pass! Too much stress will affect your performance as well. Keep an open mind.
I hope some of these tips were helpful, and if you’re taking exams this year best of luck!
By Bryce Cox
On May 15, 1988, Richard F. Reihl, a 33 year old gay man, was robbed beaten to death by high schoolers Sean G. Burke (19) and Marcos J. Perez (17), at his Wethersfield home, an event so significant that there was a piece on it in the New York Times.
Ten years later, in Laramie Wyoming, 21 year old Matthew Shepard was brutally beaten to death by Russell Henderson and Aaron McKinney. The death of Matthew Shepard changed America, shaping the way communities responded to hate speech and LGBTQ rights. The impact, while great on a national level, was astronomical on the town of Laramie, just as it was on Wethersfield over twenty eight years ago. We today, being high schoolers in a generation where we haven’t witnessed the effect of these hate crimes first hand, often overlook their importance and significance.
Written, edited, and produced by Wethersfield High School students, covering all news and events.